16 Personality Factors (16PF)

A little personality goes a long way

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Personality:  it’s a term that describes a person’s unique characteristics, the traits that underlie and influence their behaviour. Or, to put it more simply, it’s what makes you you.


But you already knew that, right?


This page is about how analysing the personalities of different people can benefit your business. And the good news is it can do this in many ways.

Why understanding an employee’s personality is useful


They say a leopard never changes its spots. Well, for most people, this is spot on. Personality remains relatively consistent throughout a person’s life. As a result, it can be reliably measured to help you make predictions about anyone, whether it’s a candidate for your vacant position or an existing employee applying for a promotion.


A personality assessment can shed light on both sides of the coin: the good and the not-so-good. You might:

  • Identify a characteristic that makes one applicant stand out from the crowd, or
  • Discover an area that will need further development to help them succeed in a particular role.


Either way, you’re now one step closer to offering that job to the most appropriate person.


The 16 Personality Factors Questionnaire (16PF) reveals a great deal of useful information about anyone who takes it, making it a great comparison tool for hiring managers and recruiters during the final stages of the selection process.

About the 16PF Questionnaire

The 16PF is a widely recognised personality test. It measures the core traits that influence a person’s behaviour through a series of multiple-choice questions. It takes about half an hour to complete, but it isn’t timed, so people can take their time and answer questions as honestly and accurately as possible.


The assessment is based on a personality model that incorporates 16 primary factors, grouped into five global factors, which are detailed below.

Relating to others

Does the person spend more time and energy investing in their interpersonal relationships or do they prefer spending time alone and working independently?

Related primary factors include:

  • Warmth
  • Liveliness
  • Social boldness
  • Privateness
  • Self-reliance.

Thinking style

Does the person tend to think in an intuitive, creative way, or a more objective, realistic way?

Related primary factors include:

  • Warmth
  • Sensitivity
  • Abstractedness
  • Openness to change.

Management of pressure

What is the person’s style when it comes to coping with pressure, disappointments, challenges, setbacks and stress?

Related primary factors include:

  • Emotional stability
  • Vigilance
  • Apprehension
  • Tension.

Influence and collaboration

In terms of influencing their environment, is the person more forceful, assertive and independent, or more cooperative and collaborative?

Related primary factors include:

  • Dominance
  • Social boldness
  • Vigilance
  • Openness to change.

Structure and flexibility

Is the person more likely to show self-discipline and self-control, or do they have a more unrestrained, flexible approach?

Related primary factors include:

  • Liveliness
  • Rule consciousness
  • Abstractedness
  • Perfectionism.
16PF table - Revelian

When to use the 16PF

We recommend using the 16PF Questionnaire as a secondary assessment for the final few candidates. This is a useful tool for businesses in any industry and positions of any variety.


Due to the detailed nature of the assessment, it is best for this questionnaire to be overseen by someone who has completed Revelian’s 16PF training.

It doesn’t end there, though


After helping you make an informed hiring decision, the 16PF can also guide you in managing your new employee. With in-depth understanding of their quirks and qualities, you are in a better position to:


  • Guide and improve their job performance
  • Help them achieve a high level of productivity
  • Improve their job satisfaction
  • Build cohesion between them, yourself, and the rest of your team.

Imagine what your staff could accomplish if you achieved all of the above with every single employee!




Work behaviour, communication and performance


30 minutes (un-timed)


170 questions

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